Teach Children To Be Powerful Not Helpless

Learned Helplessness
The Misconception: If you are in a bad situation, you will do whatever you can do to escape it.
The Truth: If you feel like you aren’t in control of your destiny, you will give up and accept whatever situation you are in. (David McRaney-November 11, 2009)

“The Civil Rights Data Collection collects a variety of information including student enrollment and educational programs and services, most of which is disaggregated by race/ethnicity, sex, limited English proficiency, and disability. . . Information collected by the CRDC is also used by other ED offices as well as policymakers and researchers outside of ED.”

“. . . the purpose of the 2017-18 CRDC is to obtain vital data related to the civil rights laws’ requirement that public local educational agencies and elementary and secondary schools provide equal educational opportunity.” (Federal Register)

It has been proven that large urban educational agencies do not provide equal educational opportunities to it students but instead use the additional funding they receive for being unable to do so to load their districts with highly paid administrators and superintendents while claiming poverty to be the reason they are unable to achieve educational success.

Our current system of education has created within our children an attitude of learned helplessness.

Children learn as early as kindergarten that they receive more attention from their teachers when they fail than when they succeed. This attitude carries into adulthood when social programs provide more services to those who consistently fail rather than help those who constantly try to improve.

It is because of learned helplessness that the war on poverty will never be won unless we change the current system of education that collects data on all children then uses that data to explain the failure of certain groups of children.

When we provide every child in America with a developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential education that concentrates on discovering, developing and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, successful adults, a system that supports success and is unaccepting of failure, we will eliminate learned helplessness and become a powerful nation.

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Mankind vs Money

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, administration expenditures for public elementary and secondary education in the fiscal year 1919-1920 were $36,752 dollars or 3.5% of the total education budget with instruction receiving $632,556 or 61.0% of the distribution.

In the fiscal year 2012-2013 administration rose to $41,238,521 dollars or 6.65% of the total expenditure while instruction fell to 53.75% or $333,123,750 dollars.

This may appear to be a gradual increase however that is not the case.

In the fiscal year 1979-1980 administration was at 4.4% of total expenditures with instruction receiving 55.5%.

In the fiscal year 1989-1990 administration jumped to 7.75% and instruction dropped to 53.45%.

“In August 1981, Terrell Bell, President Ronald Reagan’s secretary of education, assembled a panel of experts and charged them with the daunting task of reporting back in 18 months on “the quality of education in the United States.” The result was a report, released in 1983 by the National Commission on Excellence in Education, titled “A Nation at Risk.”. . .

Each year, American corporations were spending more than $40 billion to educate their workers (a figure that included money spent on remedial education as well as other professional development). . .

In September 1989, President George H.W. Bush convened the nation’s governors in Charlottesville, Va., for the first-ever National Education Summit. Their aim was to draft national “goals” for education. The summit, in which a young governor from Arkansas named Bill Clinton played a prominent role, established six broad objectives to be reached by 2000. . .

In 1995, the National Governors Association invited Louis V. Gerstner Jr., the chief executive officer of IBM, to speak at the group’s annual meeting in Burlington, Vt. Gerstner had long been involved in education reform . . . This time, it wasn’t the president of the United States who was the host; instead, President Clinton was an invited guest. . . (PBS)

The birth of the common core saw an increase in administrative costs and a decrease in instructional costs. Corporations had found a way to not only to recoup their losses but capitalize on the educational failure of our children.

Approximately $141 billion was spent on education in fiscal year 2014 while we blame poverty for the educational failure of our children.

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Make America Great By Making Education Great

Desegregating neighborhoods to end educational failure in America is another red herring placed before us by the “hedgehogs” who maintain our ignorance to insure their profits.

How do you force people to live where they do not want to live? This is America.

How do you pay for homes in neighborhoods where you cannot afford to live? This is America.

How do you force people to send their children to schools they do not want them to attend? This is America.

How can you bus children out of their neighborhood to attend better schools in suburbia? This is America.

How can you force children to learn together without first removing the stigma of racism? This is America.

How can you change the minds and attitudes of teachers who believe “colored” children are less educable than White children by paying them more to teach these children? This is America.

In America every race is compared to and judged by a White male perspective. We are governed and controlled by that perspective, Black and White.

Racism exists to maintain the hatred of self and others that perpetuate the profits of the “hedgehogs”.

Being hated for being White is just as much a burden as being hated for being Black.

Hatred is not a color it is an attitude, an attitude that gives power to those that sit atop the mountain of money collected from those who hate themselves and those who hate others.

Ending racism and poverty is not a priority, it is a disadvantage to those who profit from them.

Understanding the power of love of self and others is what must be kept unknown.

When we provide every child in America with a developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential education in their neighborhood, that concentrates on discovering, developing and directing their gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, loving, actively engaged citizens we will expose the control of the “hedgehogs” and impose the will of the people, to love one another and live in peace.

This then will be America, the greatest country on Earth.

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The Only Viable Solution

There seems to be a growing belief that desegregating schools will solve the educational failure of Black and Brown students in America.

What this is saying is that more and better resources and teachers will be given schools if White children attend failing schools to even out their racial make-up.

What this also says is that by exposure to White students, Black and Brown students will become more educable and therefore better able to learn.

The question is, what are we saying about ourselves as Americans?

The very notion that segregation is the cause of the educational failure of certain groups of children supports the rampant racism this country shields.

Prior to the integration of public schools, Black and Brown students flourished educationally. When Black and Brown students were taught by Black and Brown teachers the educational failure of those students was nearly non-existent.

It was only after de-segregation laws demanded that White teachers teach Black and Brown students that Black and Brown students began to fail.

It was only after public schools were forced to educate Black and Brown students that funding and resources were disproportionally awarded.

To believe that re-segregating schools will solve the problem of the educational failure of Black and Brown students is to perpetuate the fear and hatred of those students by White students who will continue to believe that they are somehow better than and better-off than “colored” students.

The only way to end the failure of public schools to properly educate all children is to change the system of education so that it provides an excellent education to all children.

Once we provide every child in America with a developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential education that concentrates on discovering, developing and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, respectful, caring, actively engaged adults, those adults will no longer judge children by race, income or disability.

When we provide every child in America with an excellent education, we will end racism and poverty and we will understand and acknowledge the value of humanity over money.

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Ending The Cycle Of Poverty

In a blog by Matt Barnum, he states, “. . .income inequality has manifested itself in schooling inequality and segregation, as families of means purchase the right to attend select schools. . . Most troubling is the rise of income segregation. No matter how we slice the data, low-income students are increasingly likely to be isolated in schools, which research overwhelmingly finds has a deleterious effect on their academic progress.”

Students, in elementary school, are definitely low-income since they do not work.

We are accepting of the fact that children, whose parents have made certain choices in their lives which have led to being impoverished, are discriminated against because of their parents choices.

We are also accepting of the fact that a person’s worth is tied to their economic prowess, having nothing to do with their humanity, kindness, compassion, intelligence, or respectfulness.

Money, or the lack thereof, determines the educability of the child, not the child’s level of intelligence.

We accept the belief that if Black and Brown children attend school with White children that they will somehow become smarter and are able to achieve educationally because of that exposure.

Because of this we are willing to place a child on a bus at 6:30 in the morning in order to attend a suburban school that begins at 8:00 a.m.

The cycle of poverty persists because of the worship of money and the racist attitudes we hold. We differentiate between and discriminate against children because of two things they have absolutely not control over, the color of their skin and the financial decisions of their parents.

We teach all children that money and color are more important than love and happiness to the benefit of the “hedgehogs” that keep the masses enslaved through fear and hate.

When we provide every child in America a developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential education that concentrates on discovering, developing, and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming loving, caring, respectful human beings, we will have ended the cycle of poverty and the power of the “hedgehogs” to control our lives.

Educate children, end poverty.

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Children And Love Are Special And Unique

Special: Better, greater, or otherwise different from what is usual.

Unique: Being the only one of its kind; unlike anything else.

Idiot savant: A person who is considered to be mentally handicapped but displays brilliance in a specific area, especially one involving memory.

Sir William Schwenck Gilbert was an English dramatist, poet and illustrator best known for his fourteen comic operas was quoted as saying, “When everyone is somebody, then no one’s anybody.”

It seems this attitude was adopted by the “hedgehogs” as a means of controlling the larger society through fear, jealousy and hatred by structuring our current system of education to create a norm by which everyone is judged.

We are told that we are special when we conform to or exceed the norm not realizing that in order to be better than someone that someone has to believe that they are less than or different from those who are normal.

What a terrible thing to do to a child, to make them feel less than human because they don’t fit into an artificially normed idea of what a successful human being should be.

How can parents come to believe that their child is no longer special because someone who has no knowledge of how unique their child is tells them so?

Years ago it was found that certain individuals who were considered to be idiots were actually quite brilliant.

How much genius is lost to us because we choose to judge others by a norm created to instill a sense of commonality within us that ignores the uniqueness of all of us?

We call our differences disabilities when the true disability is that hatred that blinds us to the gifts and talents we all possess when we judge ourselves and others instead of loving ourselves and others.

When we provide all children with an education that seeks to discover, develop, and direct their individual gifts and talents towards becoming happy, healthy, loving adults, we will no longer strive to be special but appreciate and respect how unique we all are.

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Educate For The Future

“Studies have shown that the more we use our brain for a wide variety of tasks which stretch it, the more likely we are to hold on to better brain-functioning, even in old age.
The more we are mentally stimulated, the more dendritic branches we create in our brain to inter-connect our brain cells, to improve functioning of our thinking and our memory. This has been found to be an effective way of delaying onset of cognitive impairment, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in the elderly.” (SayWhyDoI.com)

It seems as though we are paying more attention to secondary and higher education than we pay elementary education.

Though the research shows that early childhood education is necessary for educational success, our children receive very little stimulation in the early years of their education.

Instead of providing a rich and engaging educational experience for our youngest learners, our current system of education prefers to institutionalize them to the “rigors” of learning.

Currently we are forcing children, who’s natural instinct is to learn about their environment through play and experimentation, to sit still, walk in straight lines, constantly repeat the same information, eat the same food at the same time, and dress alike.

It is obvious the “school to prison” pipeline begins at the elementary level with the normalization of unique individuals.

The brain requires stimulation by engaging in a wide variety of tasks yet education at the elementary level does not provide that stimulation. Children are given the same information in the same way every day and tested to see how much of that information was retained. Those who can successfully regurgitate that information are said to be properly educated yet when they enter the secondary level of education they lack the skills necessary to move on to higher education.

When we provide every child with a developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential education at the elementary level, that concentrates on discovering, developing, and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, actively engaged adults, we will have secured a more promising future for us all.

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